This booklet answers ten problems encountered by serious seekers. These are not questions or doubts about the faith, but personal hindrances in approaching Christ, by faith. Many seekers have been helped by the advice given here.
‘Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you’ (Luke 11.9).
The purpose of this booklet is to help those who desire Christian conversion, but have run into difficulties. Perhaps you are, or have been, an earnest seeker, but you have a problem which prevents you from going to the Saviour in repentance, and trusting in Him for salvation. Or perhaps you have prayed for forgiveness and new life but there has been no answer to that prayer, and now you have left off trying. Various problems trouble and delay seekers, and here are some that are commonly raised – yours may be among them. The answer to the first problem will include guidelines for repentance.
1 ‘I cannot repent, because I am not sufficiently ashamed of my sins. I do not feel my sinfulness enough.’
Seekers often gain the impression that they must be in deep distress about all their sins to ‘qualify’ for forgiveness, but the Lord does not actually ask for a painful degree of emotional anguish. As long as genuine regret, self-condemnation and hatred of sin are firmly in your head, you can sincerely repent. It is true that some seekers do feel an extremely deep sense of emotional sorrow when they first repent, but not all. Many who are genuinely repentant have a clear mental awareness of their sinfulness, but for them deeper feelings will come later. If you have been made aware of your lost and sinful condition, and you know you deserve condemnation, then turn to the Lord and repent. The Word of God tells us, ‘They shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn’ (Zechariah 12.10). In other words, as the seeker sincerely repents and trusts the Saviour, and as he realises how much the Lord suffered on Calvary to bear the agonising punishment of his sin (ie: as he looks upon the Lord Whom he has pierced), then often his feelings come more to life and his heart melts in shame and gratitude to Christ for what He has done.
1 ‘I cannot repent, because I am not sufficiently ashamed of my sins.’
2 ‘I wish I could repent, but sometimes my heart is too hard.’
3 ‘I cannot turn to Christ yet, because I am not good enough.’
4 ‘I have repeatedly prayed for salvation, but so far nothing seems to have happened.’
5 ‘I want to be a Christian, but I think the Christian life is too hard and I will have to give up too much.’
6 ‘I cannot repent and be converted because I have gone too far into sin.’
7 ‘I cannot find Christ because of my doubts, and because I cannot understand everything in the Bible.’
8 ‘I cannot trust the Gospel and turn to Christ, because the biblical way of salvation seems too easy.’
9 ‘I cannot be converted because I think I have left it too late.’
10 ‘I cannot be converted because I do not think that my prayers will be answered by God.’